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Posts Tagged ‘Terry Semel’

Authors Get to Know the Real Arnon Milchan

Next week, a must-read for Hollywood aficionados arrives in bookstores: Confidential: The Life of Secret Agent Turned Hollywood Tycoon Arnon Milchan. Written by brothers-in-law Meir Doron and Joseph Gelman, the Geffen Books release details the incredible transition made by Milchan from international arms dealer to prolific, Oscar nominated movie producer.

Going into the project, the authors realized their subject would take about as kindly to the book as Oprah Winfrey did to Kitty Kelley‘s recent bio. So they opted for the strategy of writing the book in full, secretly, and then alerting Milchan. Once the book was completed in 2009, it did not take long for the pair to hook up with their subject. Per an essay by the authors on FoxNews.com:

Milchan requested a series of meetings over the matter, which ended up involving many cigarettes, herbal teas, shots of tequila, and Stella beer. We met his wife Amanda and his new child Shimon (named after Shimon Peres), his butler John, and other friends and family in the casual setting of his Malibu home, the former residence of acclaimed director John Frankenheimer, and the house where Robert Kennedy stayed the night before his assassination at the Ambassador Hotel the following morning.

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Terry Semel Inspired As He Chats Up His Former Yahoo! Colleagues

SV20088.jpgDan Cox, on special assignment for FishbowlLA, covering the 2008 Sun Valley Media Conference.

In the Sun Valley Lodge bar last night, where all the good deals are made, an informal pow-wow of sorts for Yahoo! executives and their new partners Google Inc. was underway with Google co-founder Larry Page, Yahoo! President Sue Decker and even former Yahoo! co-chair Terry Semel all having a drink. Semel would later tell a couple of inquiring reporters that the conversation at the table was inspiring.

Semel_7.10.jpgElsewhere in the bar, former Miramax founder Harvey Weinstein ambled in, but refused to say anything to reporters. “I’m not talking to anyone up here,” he said before joining Wendi Deng‘s table.

Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, Gamco Investors Mario Gabelli, NBA commissioner David Stern, ICM’s Chris Silbermann and Page 1 Media’s Isaac Lee were spotted.

Earlier Google. co-founder Sergey Brin lauded the search engine deal they have with Yahoo, saying Yahoo was a “good company with good people,” but he deferred all other questions to Yahoo! chairman Jerry Yang, who is due into Sun Valley today.

Brin was also approached by Sony Corp.’s Katsumi Ihara who wanted to discuss TVs, but Ihara was thrown for a loop when he was told the screen Brin usually used was a Toshiba.

Also, the mystery continues. Just who is Ken Starr? The journos in Sun Valley were all convinced it was the former prosecutor who had a Jones about Bill Clinton. When confronted, this Starr denied any connection to that Starr, who is currently Dean of Pepperdine Law School. But he refused to disclose who or what Starr & Co. actually does.

Yang Takes Over Yahoo as Semel Steps Aside

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Terry Semel, the former Hollywood studio boss, stepped aside at Yahoo!, after 6 years in the executive suite. Co-founder and Chief Yahoo Jerry Yang became CEO (here’s his My New Job memo) , with Sue Drecker as president. Semel will remain as nonexecutive chairman. Yang is seen by some as a placeholder.

Why?
Yahoo lost ad dollars to Google and share price dropped under Semel’s watch. Shareholders got cranky during the annual meeting earlier this month.

Semel also didn’t acquire DoubleClick, Feedburner, MySpace, Facebook or YouTube, and the original content never materialized.

The entertainment was a bust. Employee morale was low.

Semel’s pay package has been decried, as has the company’s cooperation with the Chinese internet police.

Heave-Hoo! Yahoo’s Semel Out As CEO

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Breaking news from late yesterday:

Yahoo! Co-Founder Jerry Yang Named Chief Executive Officer

Terry Semel Named Non-Executive Chairman
Sue Decker Named President
Yang and Decker to Focus on Realizing Yahoo!’s Strategic Vision by Accelerating Execution, Further Strengthening Leadership and Fostering a Culture of Winning

Sunnyvale, Calif., June 18, 2007 — Yahoo! Inc. (Nasdaq: YHOO), a leading global Internet company, today announced that the Board of Directors has appointed Jerry Yang, Yahoo! co-founder and long-time board member, as Chief Executive Officer. Terry Semel, current Yahoo! Chairman and CEO, will assume the position of non-executive Chairman and serve as an advisor and important resource for the company’s senior management team, while also working closely with the Board. The Board also named Susan Decker, formerly Executive Vice President and Head of Advertiser and Publisher Group, as President of the company.

Terry Semel said, “The Board and I have long talked about the importance of ensuring a smooth succession in Yahoo!’s senior leadership — and more recently, about the need for a leadership team committed to carrying Yahoo! through its multi-year transformation. As we discussed my future goals and plans, I was clear in telling the Board of my desire to take a step back sooner rather than later. I believe Jerry and Sue, with their superb talents and intense dedication to Yahoo! and its people, are the perfect combination to carry us forward. This is the time for new executive leadership, with different skills and strengths, to step in and drive the company to realize its full potential — it is the right thing to do, and the right time is now.”

Now, the analysis:

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